Dec 8, 2013 8:00am EST
didnavdela but no doubt respected him. bill clinton, of course, very close. and president obama in a unique way, encouraged to go see him when he's still a senator. mandela encouraged to meet with this up-and-coming star in politics. and for our president to be so moved by mandela, to really have his own place in the civil rights struggle against apartheid i think makes it very meaningful. his presence will be significant. >> when it comes to president obama's presence on the international stage, we know he's talking about this potential for comprehensive agreement with iran yesterday. he said it's 50/50 or, frankly, it could be worse. his approval numbers very low here. when it comes to the international stage, how is his capital right now? >> i don't think it's exceedingly high. i think a lot of america's allies, particularly in the middle east from israel to some of the gulf countries think america has lost its nerve in some regard, particularly when it comes to confronting iran. so i think there is some difficulty with ourbili because our economic standing has some impact as well. it do
Dec 7, 2013 5:00am PST
. presidents barack obama, george w. bush, and bill clinton will attend some of the services scheduled for this week. we don't have the exact time line or schedule, but they plan to be here. we will have much more from here but i know you're tracking breaking news in the state, erica. back to you. >> thank you, lester. >>> today's top story. the american veteran merrill newman will be home are his family in california in a matter of house. he has been held prison in north korea for weeks. late last night he was relieved and quickly began that trip home. ian williams is tracking the developments for us this morning from beijing. ian, good morning. >> reporter: good morning, erica. merrill newman is now a free man after north korea deported him on the first available fleight out of pyongyang. >> i'm very glad to be on my way home. i appreciate the tolerance the dprk government has gave me to be on my way. >> reporter: he also said that he was particularly grateful to the north koreans for releasing him and he was looking forward to seeing his wife. the north koreans said they leaved him
Dec 6, 2013 7:00am PST
from nelson mandela's extraordinary example of moral courage, kindness and humility. bill clinton tweeted a picture and wrote, "i will never forget my friend madibaa," use the affectionate name by which mandela was known to his followers. mandela wasn't always on the u.s. side. in the 1980s president reagan supported apartheid regime, and eastern as protests broke out an college campuses across america demanding the u.s. punish the regime. ♪ ♪ free mandela >> reporter: "free nelson mandela" became a popular anthem for black and white americans. finally, congress, including key republicans, overrode reagan's veto imposing the economic sanctions that helped break the apartheid regime. that set the stage for mandela's triumphant visit to washington as his country's president. >> we are to one another brother and sister, a united rainbow nation that rises from the bond a age. >> bono, mandela's great friend wrote in the end nelson mandela showed us how to love, not to hate, not because he surrendered to rage or violence, but because he learned love would do a better job. savannah?
Dec 9, 2013 7:00am PST
service tomorrow. they'll be joined by jimmy carter, bill clinton, and george w. bush. nbc's lester holt is in soweto with more on this. lester, good morning to you. >> reporter: matt, good morning. what an emotional few days it's been. we're outside the mandela house. it's the house he came home to after his release from prison in 1990. a lot of folks will be lining up tonight for the privilege to be at the stadium and at the memorial service but like the 50 or 60 some odd world leaders coming, none of them were invited. this is going to be an event on a scale rarely seen in any country and it shows how beloved and respected nelson mandela was across this planet. this morning they are hard at work preparing johannesburg's 90,000 seat fnb stadium for tomorrow's public memorial. a potential security and logistics nightmare as scores of world leaders and luminaries ranging from heads of states to rock stars to business tycoons gather to pay their respects to nelson mandela. ♪ since news of his death broke on thursday, south africans have engaged in a virtual nonstop salute and celebratio